Russia Will Try to Interfere in 2018 Midterms, US Intelligence Agencies Say

Pauline Gross
February 14, 2018

Trump's view contradicts his intelligence chiefs, including Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats, CIA Director Mike Pompeo and FBI Director Chris Wray, who all testified - again - on Tuesday that they supported the intelligence community's January 2017 assessment that Russian Federation interfered in the 2016 election.

"We expect to see North Korea press ahead with additional missile tests this year, and its foreign minister has threatened an atmospheric nuclear test over the Pacific", Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats warned.

"We expect Russian Federation to continue using propaganda, social media, false flag personas, sympathetic spokesmen and other means to influence, to try to build on its wide range of operations and exacerbate social and political fissures in the United States", Coats said.

During Senator Heinrich's questioning, CIA Director Pompeo and DNI Director Coats warned of Russian attempts to interfere in US elections and confirmed existing Russian activity and intention to have an impact on the 2018 midterm elections.

The Senate Intelligence Committee conducted its annual hearing on worldwide threats, questioning FBI Director Christopher Wray as well as other members of the Intelligence community. Coats said vetting such companies was a top priority.

Despite President Trump's denials, all top intelligence officials agree that Moscow was behind cyberattacks in 2016 that were meant to influence the presidential election.

The Trump administration's top spy chief quietly criticized the White House in written testimony Tuesday, warning lawmakers that USA allies are questioning America's ability to keep its global commitments amid looming threats from China and Russian Federation.

"Militant groups supported by Islamabad will continue to take advantage of their safe haven in Pakistan to plan and conduct attacks in India and Afghanistan, including against U.S. interests", he said.

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"We realize that we have to answer for the American people: What did Russian Federation do to mess with the 2016 elections?" he said. He's virtually giving the Kremlin the green light to interfere in USA elections.

"It is our hope and our belief that before the primaries begin, we intend to have an overview of our findings that will be public", said Senator Richard Burr, chairman of the panel.

Facebook reported that 126 million Americans may have seen Russian-backed political content on its platform over a two-year period.

"We've had more than a year to get our act together and address the threat posed by Russian Federation and implement a strategy to deter further attacks".

The heads of the CIA, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the National Security Agency, as well as the director of national intelligence, were all in agreement about how important it is to address this threat.

The American people could pressure Congress on this front. "They are doing that not only in the United States but doing it throughout Europe and perhaps elsewhere".

Robert Cardillo, director of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, said government and industry needed to "lock arms" and cooperate, but that he was optimistic that would happen. In a press conference as president-elect, Trump said, "As far as hacking, I think it was Russian Federation".

Other reports by GizPress

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